Top 9 Healthy Salad Dressing Alternatives

Salads are regarded as being healthy and usually, they are the first choice for lunches or dinners when people are trying to lose weight. While known for being nutritious and low in calories, a salad can also be quite the opposite if it’s served with a fatty dressing that is far from being diet-friendly.

Many restaurants will normally state how many calories come with your salad with just the vegetables, but they often leave the calories from the dressing away from your eyesight, and many do not state the amount of saturated fats contained per serving. 

For that reason, making a homemade salad with your own salad dressing is undoubtedly a safer option and allows you to maintain your healthy eating routine. Ditch a doggy store-bought dressing and make a healthy one at home!

The Top 9 Healthy Salad Dressing Alternatives

While a typical low-calorie salad is normally composed of leafy greens, fresh vegetables, and some type of light protein, the extra ingredients added to it can significantly increase its caloric value. Dressing, in particular, is one of the additions that can kill your salad’s healthy vibe if it contains, for example, trans fat or if there is added sugar.

If you enjoy tasty yet diet-friendly dressings, consider the following options below for a truly healthy salad dressing option.

Oil and Vinegar

This is a simple and effective way to add flavor and healthy omega fats to your diet, using only two natural ingredients – vinegar (such as rice vinegar) and oil. Mix two tablespoons of oil, such as extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil, with as much vinegar as you desire for flavor. When making your dressing, always use more vinegar than oil to keep the calories low, which is particularly important if you’re on a weight loss diet.

If you like a little more flavor in your salad dressing, use some good balsamic vinegar and mix it with cold-pressed olive oil. Not only will your dressing be flavorful, but it will also have LDL-lowering qualities.

Green Goddess Dressing

Green Goddess salad dressing is one of the trendiest healthy salad dressing recipes that is widely promoted by celebrities all around the world for its highly nutritional content as well as divine taste. While the traditional version includes mayonnaise and sour cream, you can make a healthier alternative using Greek yogurt instead.

Blend some yogurt with avocado oil and fresh herbs, such as fresh basil, fresh parsley, as well as dill, mint, tarragon, cilantro, and chives. Add some minced garlic, lemon juice and zest, capers, plus salt and pepper to taste. And that’s it! 

The variety of fresh ingredients used for the Green Goddess dressing makes it one of the healthiest salad dressings. And surely the tastiest! Drizzle it over a healthy bowl of veggies, or use it as a dipping sauce for sweet potato fries. In either case, you will fall in love with this green, creamy goodness!

Caesar Salad Dressing 

You can never go wrong with a classic Caesar salad dressing. It’s rich, creamy, and tastefully garlicky, which makes it a great addition to any type of fresh salad. 

While you can easily find ready-made Caesar dressing at the supermarkets, don’t let them fool you – they usually contain a lot of sugar and other unnecessary ingredients, which is the opposite of what a healthy salad dressing is all about. By making your own healthy salad dressings, you keep the calories and nutrients in check. So don’t hesitate and make a nutritious Caesar salad dressing today!

This homemade Caesar dressing recipe is not only delicious but also very easy to prepare. Simply whisk together some mayonnaise, anchovy paste, lemon juice, Dijon mustard and minced garlic. Add some freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggano as well as salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy it with your favorite chicken salad or toss it with vegetables before roasting.

Sesame Ginger Dressing

If you’re looking for intensely flavorful healthy salad dressing recipe ideas, this Asian-inspired sesame ginger homemade dressing is one of the best oil-based dressings for a nourishing salad that will give it an extra kick of flavor. 

For the dressing, all you have to do is mix some sesame oil with fresh ginger, soy sauce, rice or red wine vinegar, lime juice, honey, and garlic. You can also add some sriracha if you like the dressing to be more spicy.

Such wholesome homemade salad dressing recipes like this one will definitely bring the taste of your salad or stir-fry to another level. Top tip: make a few portions of the dressing and store it in airtight mason jars for up to 3 days so that you always have your dressing ready for a quick salad on the go.

Creamy Avocado Dressing

If you enjoy creamy and healthy homemade salad dressings, this one will certainly bring the taste of your salad to the next level. This creamy avocado dressing contains avocado, plain Greek yogurt, red onions, lime juice, olive oil, garlic, a little dill, and some cayenne pepper for some additional spice. It’s also super easy to make – just throw all the ingredients into a food processor and blend to create a smooth paste.

This easy healthy dressing is not only tasty but also incredibly nutritious. Avocado contains healthy fat, which helps lower blood pressure and protect against heart disease.

Such a healthy homemade dressing can also work as a dipping sauce for oil-free chips or zucchini fries – a perfect treat if you’re craving some fast food but want to keep it healthy.

Tahini Dressing

If you enjoy Middle Eastern flavors, consider this tahini dressing as a way to jazz up your salad. To make this creamy dressing, you will need some tahini paste (which is made from toasted ground hulled sesame seeds), fresh lemon juice, minced garlic or garlic powder, olive oil, and sea salt. You can also add a little maple syrup to balance the sharpness of garlic and lemon.

Vegans and vegetarians love adding this healthy homemade salad dressing to their meals, such as Buddha bowls, as the healthy fats present in the tahini paste deliver all the necessary nutrients they need on a plant-based diet.

The dressing can be enjoyed with a variety of salads, and it tastes particularly well when drizzled over grilled vegetables and homemade falafels.

Stilton Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

If you fancy some cheesy notes in your salad, this blue cheese dressing is your best bet. The recipe uses blue cheese (you can use Stilton or any other type of blue cheese), onion powder, white wine vinegar, and olive oil. Add salt and some black pepper to taste and mix all ingredients using a blender. It’s as simple as that!

Flavorful toppings like this one can really make a salad burst with flavor, all without adding the harmful saturated fat that most store-bought dressings have. It’s definitely worth a try!

Maple-Mustard Vinaigrette

If you are a vinaigrette lover, give this alternative salad dressing a try, as it’s one of the best healthy salad dressings you can make at home. If you like the sweet and savory flavor of a classic honey mustard dressing, this maple-mustard vinaigrette dressing will surely become your top choice! It is made of coarse-grained mustard (you can also use Dijon mustard for a slightly more bold flavor), maple syrup, low-sodium soy sauce (coconut aminos or tamari will also make a perfect fit), heart-healthy canola oil (or walnut oil), apple cider vinegar, as well as salt and pepper to taste.

The sweet and savory flavor of the dressing will add to the overall taste of the veggies in your salad. If you want to make your salad taste even more divine, you can also add a little hot sauce to the dressing and enjoy this unique flavor combo.

Any leftover dressing can be stored in the fridge in an air-tight mason jar so you can enjoy it with your greens at a later time.

Ranch Dressing

Who doesn’t love a creamy and versatile ranch dressing? Unfortunately, store-bought ranch dressing labels usually feature a list of harmful ingredients, and many of them are even difficult to pronounce. Luckily, there’s a way to make your favorite ranch dressing much healthier and still keep its delicious taste.

This Greek yogurt ranch dressing can be made of low-fat Greek yogurt (you can also use low-fat cottage cheese), garlic powder, onion powder, lemon juice, dried dill, and salt. For even more flavor, add some fresh herbs, like fresh chives, to bring out the flavor of your salad.

This delicious and healthy ranch dressing tastes just like the real deal but contains only healthy macronutrients, including good fat and valuable protein.

Drizzle it on your veggies or use it as a dip. You can be sure you will become obsessed with it once you try it!

The Bottom Line

If you are watching your weight and enjoy eating salads, consider the 9 options for healthy salad dressing recipes listed above. They are all incredibly flavorsome and totally diet-friendly.

Are you up for a challenge? Over this next month, make a wholesome and healthy salad for dinner at least four or five nights per week. Using one of the healthy dressings, of course! Your body will thank you later.

A nutritious diet is a key factor when it comes to keeping a healthy lifestyle. However, physical activity is equally important. A mix of those two elements can guarantee you will not only look great but also feel great.

With the help of professional personal training services, you can successfully achieve your fitness goals. Sign up today and become the best version of yourself for yourself.








About the Author

, Celebrity Personal Trainer and Fitness & Nutrition Expert headquartered in Scottsdale, AZ. He specializes in helping men and women achieve weight loss, muscle building, toning and other customized fitness & nutrition programs to create a Healthy Lifestyle. James offers private luxury personal training, 12-week custom workout plans, and personalized nutrition meal plans. Follow on Google+.

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